Fashion Icon is a perfectly solid take on the “Top Girl” RPG, if not an especially original one.
Gameloft’s Fashion Icon takes the Top Girl RPG and brings it to iPad, with lavish graphics and a minor gameplay twist. Most Top Girl games are about hunting down the best clothes and serving your rivals, but Fashion Icon adds in the idea that you’re a fashion blogger at large in Paris.
In practice, this amounts to being able to update a “blog” you can push out to your friends list after you complete and edit your in-game status. It doesn’t change the feel of the game very much, but is still worth noting as the game’s framing device.
Otherwise, Fashion Icon is an extremely standard Top Girl-type game, one that’s very reminiscent of Crowdstar’s It Girl. You’re effectively playing an RPG, but the genre’s traditional dungeons and battles are replaced with high-end designer shopping and parties.
Each party has style requirements that demand the player wear an outfit worth a certain number of points in one of the game’s three basic styles, and may also require that a player acquire the right type of boyfriend. You spend most of the game trying to hunt down clothes and accessories that let you get the score you need for entering a certain party.
Most clothing demands the game’s time-based currency, coins, which you earn by working jobs, styling on other girls at parties, and completing missions. Jobs consume energy, as does shopping for clothes. Styling at parties and flirting with boyfriends consumes a different resource, confidence. Provided you don’t end up in a situation where you can’t amass enough style to enter a party, you can tease very long gameplay sessions out of Fashion Icon by alternating between energy activities and confidence activities.
Certain special pieces of clothing consume the game’s cash-based currency, diamonds. You earn a few diamonds for certain in-game activities, like leveling up or mastering jobs. Otherwise, you purchase diamonds at the rather pricy base rate of $2 to 5 diamonds. A typical piece of in-game clothing with diamond requirements might cost about 10 to 15 diamonds. You can also spend diamonds to instantly clear missions, to unlock game content that’s usually gated by level, or for things like extra spins on the daily prize wheel.
Fashion Icon is not in any way a poorly-made game, although the loading screens are worth noting as its major flaw. The game goes to a loading screen whenever you do anything that requires a change of location, like visiting your closet, entering a party, or going to a new shop. These loading screens are long, and they are frequent. They can get annoying during long sessions, especially if you want to change clothes frequently.
The loading screens aside, though, Fashion Icon is a perfectly good Top Girl-style RPG to pick up if you aren’t playing one already.